This quick and easy Arroz Congri or Cuban Rice with Black Beans is rich with island-inspired spices and smoky bacon. Ready in 20 minutes.
One of my first memories of spending time with my husband’s family was eating this dish: Arroz Congri or Cuban Rice with Beans.
This is one of his family’s hallmark recipes and along with Arroz con Pollo (chicken and rice) and Platanos (fried plantain bananas), this is one of the most requested dishes in my home.
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Why? Because it is satisfying both as a rice dish but also perfect as a standalone meal.
Arroz Con Gris Cubano or Rice with Black Beans Recipe
Arroz Congri, AKA Black Beans with Rice, is made with a variety of island-inspired ingredients found in Cuba like white rice, black beans, onions, garlic and rich spices like cumin, oregano and coriander.
Most of these ingredients are also easily found in most pantries, which is why I love this recipe so much.
You might think that this recipe is super spicy, but not so. It’s really a delicious blend of spice that offers layers of flavor for your tastebuds.
And, even though you might not have tried this recipe before, it really is a quick and easy recipe for those folks who find themselves short on time and need a healthy meal or side dish fast.
My Favorite Cuban Cookbook
In my library of recipe books–and I have loads of those–is this very special one: The Cuban Table: A Celebration of Food, Flavors, and History. Since my husband and his family is from Cuba, I love to page through this book and learn about the culture behind the recipes. It’s easy to follow and you’ll find a lot of inspiration for adding a bit of this famous island’s cuisine into your culinary repertoire.
The best part of this recipe is that you can eat this dish on its own or you can stretch it a bit by adding a protein, like Carnitas (pulled pork) alongside it.
Either way, you’ll find this a must-keep recipe in your culinary arsenal.
Cuban Rice with Black Beans uses minimal ingredients like chopped onions, garlic and spice.
To start, chop fresh smoked bacon into small chunks. Allow this to cook for about five minutes.
Then add onion and garlic to the bacon to cook until translucent.
Next, add the spices and bay leaf, stirring well.
Finally, add rice, black beans and broth. Simmer until rice is tender, about 20 minutes or so.
And, remember, you can serve your Arroz Congri alongside Cuban Pork Carnitas and sweet fried plantain bananas for a truly authentic Cuban dining experience. Enjoy!
Arroz Congri or Cuban Rice with Black Beans
- 15 oz black beans canned
- 2 cups long-grain rice
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/8 tsp pepper flakes
- 1 cup onion chopped
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp ground oregano
- 1 bay leaf
- 3 strips of bacon chopped
- 4 cups chicken stock
- Salt and Pepper to taste
In a large pot, sauté bacon for about five minutes on medium high heat.
Then add the onion and garlic until tender for three more minutes on medium heat.
Next, add rest of the ingredients and 2 cups of chicken stock.
Cook at a simmer for about 20 minutes and as the liquid gets soaked up by the rice, add the rest of the stock.
Once until the rice becomes soft take off the heat.
Remove bay leaf.
- Serve rice hot. Enjoy!